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450 bm advice

11 May 2023
@ 02:39 pm (GMT)

Thomas Kitchen

hi guys been a long time since i have commented on here, its good to see its still going strong with a lot of good helpful advice.

did search through forum a bit looking for topics on the 450 bm.
just after bit of advice my sons now gotten to the age where he wants to go hunting with me, the area's i hunt is mainly bush stalking so decided i better go down the suppressed rifle route.
discovering that howa has stopped their mini rifles in bushmaster i decided to grab one of the last ones.

only been out for one range trips but did very basic set up and changed out trigger springs.
initial test i am getting around 1" groups with factory ammo and a 1.5-4x20 scope so im not complaining at all.

i was reading nathan's comments on one of the other threads (see below)
so just after feed back on projectiles
there the 250gr ftx which is what came in factory ammo, there is the xtp 300gr in mag and non mag variety.
also the 395 sub x which i have found data for them for 1600fps which seems like it wouldn't be to bad of option.

Nathan Foster
Re: 45-70 vs .444 Marlin vs .454 Casull
Hi Marcos, I have been monitoring this for some time now. The .452 bullets are very good killers but there are some limitations. If for example one uses a 250gr conventional HP driven very quickly (carbine speeds / .460 / Bushmaster speeds), the bullet may display blow back such as 2 to 3" entry wounds. Wounding remains fairly broad thereafter but soon tapers off. The recovered bullet may remain intact to some degree (confirming that the bullet did not blow up on impact) but may be found flattened out against the offside hide or in bone etc. Depending on the impact velocity, the bullet may not go much further that 12" when used on light to medium weight game. So what does this tell us? Well, its pretty obvious. The 250gr driven at high speeds is adequate and yes sometimes a spectacular killer of lighter animals. But if one is looking for a good balance of wounding versus penetration / game weight versatility, a heavier 300gr bullet is a better choice. The simple fact is, the 250gr pills have a very low SD.

There are certainly a few ways to manipulate performance. A tough lighter weight bullet does of course enhance penetration compared to the baseline conventional bullet performance described. A heavy but soft bullet can also produce deeper penetration, not only as a result of the increased SD, but also the reduced muzzle / impact velocity. And of course we can always combine the two (tough construction + weight) to achieve even deeper penetration. Whatever the case, the key is to match the bullet to the job at hand. The .454 is certainly a good energy dumper. It also works very well after velocity falls away.

The comments I have made above should lead to obvious conclusions regarding the .444 and .45-70. The .444 has high SD options as well as soft point and bonded projectiles to choose from. The .45-70 can be loaded with much heavier 'off the shelf' projectiles. But going back to your question Marcos, a 300gr Hornady or Sierra HP is adequate for Red deer and boar in the .45-70. More info can of course be found in the Knowledge base.

A potent lever action is good in theory but these rifles can sometimes let us down. A poor fit, heavy triggers, a wandering zero under high recoil etc. A bolt action can be nicer to tune but then suddenly we find ourselves shooting a .458 Win Mag which is not exactly compact.

I suppose it really depends on what one is looking for, the type of game hunted, required rifle weight, expected accuracy etc. Terrain and expected ranges are important considerations. Close ranges do away with the need to worry about trajectories. Longer ranges are a bit of a concern. A higher speed may produce a flatter trajectory but can also place stress on some bullet designs when shooting at very close ranges.

I don't know if that helps any.


14 May 2023
@ 08:31 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: 450 bm advice
HI Thomas, seeing as your son is still quite young, I would suggest looking about for the 185gr Sierra HP and then work up a mild load for goat.

The Sierra has a massive hollow point and provided it is not pushed too far, generates a relatively broad wound at close ranges combined with acceptable penetration.

For general plinking and very close range hunting, one can use 15gr Trailboss for about 1350fps. There is no recoil (even without a muffler) but its best to stick inside 50 yards with this load, simply for the sake of both trajectory wound generation.

Trailboss is not however ideal as there is no room to increase power. Somewhat better performance is obtained from either 2205 or 2207 powders. Both are stick powders so unlike H110, you can download them a bit.

If you want to hunt tougher animals such as pigs then it will pay to increase the bullet weight. The same applies if you wish to increase velocity to and above 2000fps.

In any case, I would try to keep the speed above subsonic and ideally above 1500fps for the sake of an easy trajectory (and wounding) but below 2000fps for the sake of recoil and bullet performance (minimize bullet stress). That's the sort of velocity window I would be looking at taking all factors into consideration. Basically, set it up and use it in the same way as you would use a .44 Mag lever rifle (or .357), utilizing the suppressor to mitigate recoil.

Hope that helps a bit.
14 May 2023
@ 07:05 pm (GMT)

Thomas Kitchen

Re: 450 bm advice
Hi Nathan thank you for your reply.

I should clarify I'll be shooting, my son will just be a spectator for atleast another couple years.
Just want to make sure I can use most humane load possible would hate for him to be put off by wounded or lost animals.



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